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N. Korean vice FM leaves for Russia

A delegation led by a top North Korean diplomat left for Russia on Friday, the North's media reported, amid the U.N. Security Council's move to slap stronger sanctions against the North over its latest nuke test.

An unspecified number of North Korean officials led by Vice Foreign Minister Pak Myong-guk left Pyongyang earlier in the day heading to Russia, according to the Korean Central News Agency.

The KCNA did not reveal an itinerary or other details such as the purpose of the visit to Russia.

Pak is seen as trying to seek consultations with Russia over the international community's push for a U.N. resolution to punish Pyongyang during his visit to Moscow.

Earlier in the day, Choi Son-hui, deputy director-general of the North Korean foreign ministry's American affairs bureau, was found to have entered China through the airport in Beijing, according to sources. She may have a similar mission as Pak's, experts say.

The U.N. Security Council is working on a fresh resolution for "stronger and more comprehensive" sanctions against the North over its fourth nuclear test on Jan. 6.

China and Russia, two permanent veto-wielding members of the U.N. Security Council, have firmly opposed the North's nuclear provocations, but they remain reserved over how strongly the Security Council should impose sanctions against Pyongyang. (Yonhap)

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